Leanne Rule recalls the hilarious experience of creating a Love Island advert

The Brighton-based illustrator talks flaccid aubergines and fit bodies during the making of a Love Island TV spot.

18 August 2022


With a portfolio that boasts big name clients like Nike and Taco Bell, 3D illustrator and animator Leanne Rule is certainly no stranger to high-profile, high-pressure briefs. But creating an advert for one of Britain’s most beloved (and hated) reality TV shows is still enough to push most competent and successful artists well out of their comfort zones. Luckily for Leanne, the process was equally as fun as it was stressful – after all, ITV’s hit programme Love Island is known for being outrageous, ridiculous and downright silly. Which is exactly the kind of approach that Leanne was asked to adopt for this brief.

But make no mistake, this didn’t mean the work would be a walk in the park. And, as Leanne attested to during her talk, there were several hurdles to jump during the process. Referring to an on-screen illustration of an aubergine emoji, she recalled how she was told by the client that her original drawing of the symbol “wasn’t naughty enough” and needed to be “more phallic". Later, the audience heard how her usual style of drawing bodies, which is characterised by squishy curves and round bellies, needed to be adapted to suit the “fit” physiques that Love Island is known for. Never one to shy away from a challenge, Leanne took these problems in her stride, creating an advert that is testament to her skill and versatility as an illustrator.

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